Tuesday, 30 November 2010

Independent?

Weary of the anti-American anti-Israel reactionary chic of The Guardian, I've been experimenting with other daily papers. Recently, I've been giving The Independent a whirl (well, it does have John Rentoul, Steve Richards and Julie Burchill).

But the Indy's coverage of the Wikileaks saga has given me a distinct sense of d√©ja vu. Yesterday's front page headline: 'Deceits, plots, insults: America laid bare'. And today's: 'Now we know. America really doesn't care about injustice in the Middle East'. A fair and balanced account of American foreign policy? I don't think so. Messrs. Milne and Steele couldn't have done better (Ah, I see: today's cover story is by Robert Fisk. That explains it.)

I shall seriously consider taking my custom elsewhere. But where...?

6 comments:

SnoopyTheGoon said...

One British person with plenty of inside knowledge told me that Indy is a Guardian version for the poor (well, not in the direct sense of the word "poor").

And yes, Fisk is there, one cannot miss him. However, lately Fisk is rather a good source of laughs due to encroaching dementia.

I personally am a great believer in reading all of the spectrum and then trying to make up my own puny mind. But it's time consuming, of course.

jams o donnell said...

I suppose you could always throw in the towel and read the Fortean Times instead!

Martin said...

Actually, after buying The Guardian almost every weekday since I was an A Level politics student, I find I no longer need my daily fix of a hard-copy newspaper. Instead I find myself reading the headlines on the BBC website or similar, then browsing the web for my favourite columnists/commentators - Kamm, Rentoul, Aaronovitch. Of course, the stupid Times paywall gets in the way a bit...But the internet dislodges old loyalties and encourages this kind of pick n mix approach to the media.

peter said...

What is most disturbing to this independent is the predictability of the opinions in the daily papers. The first time I stopped reading the Grauniad was under John Major, because the paper became so predictable, to the point of being an anti-Tory campaign leaflet. I returned to it under Blair because it had become less predictable than the others. However, with the ConDems in power, it is once again very predictable.

The best paper for news is still the Financial Times, always my other paper.

ModernityBlog said...

Well, Martin, if you don't like the Indy's coverage of the wikileaks stuff then what will you think of mine :)

Martin said...

Mod - I've read your post on Wikileaks and I don't disagree with your basic line about the need to hold governments to account. What I objected to in the Independent's coverage was the selective use of the leaks to reinforce an existing prejudice (against America and 'the west') and also the presentation of tendentious opinion as 'news'.

I'm not sure what to make of the whole Wikileaks thing more generally. I tend to feel that Assange has a grudge against western democracies and that his intentions are not good. I also think that 'liberal' papers have tended to focus on the bits that confirm their prejudices and overlook those that don't - e.g. Arab fears of Iran and their call for the US to act against it. Plus, as others have said, there's an element of 'so-whatness' about the 'revelations'. So diplomats are rude each other and nations spy on each other - what's new? If the information had been about Britain, or France, or Sweden - it wouldn't have been much different. It's laughable to conclude that the leaks tell us something shocking about Ameriica...

Peter - you're the second person to suggest the FT - I shall give it a go today, thanks.